Khanh Hoa welcomes first bunch of Russian tourists in nearly 2 years
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A charter flight brought 226 Russian tourists to the central coastal Khanh Hoa Province on Sunday under an ongoing vaccine passport trial program.
The first Russian tourists visiting the province since the country partially reopened its borders last month after nearly two years are staying at Vinpearl Resort Nha Trang, Selectum Noa Resort and Cam Ranh Riviera Beach Resort, and will visit tourist attractions such as Yang Bay eco-tourism sites, Nha Phu Lagoon, Hoa Lan (Orchid) Island, and some shopping destinations.
Nguyen Duc Tan, director of tour operator Anex Vietnam, which has brought the tourists to Vietnam, said they would enjoy a vacation in Khanh Hoa for one week to 25 days before returning home also by charter flights operated by Russian carrier Azur Air.
A Russian tourist wearing the Vietnamese non la (conical hat) arrives in Cam Ranh Airport, Khanh Hoa Province, on December 26, 2021. Photo by VnExpress/Xuan Ngoc
All were required to furnish certificates showing they have been fully vaccinated or have recovered from Covid and tested negative within 72 hours before departure.
They were required to make health declaration on arrival and told to install the IGOVN and PC-Covid health declaration applications on their phones.
Natalia Rukavichkina, 37, said her family has visited Nha Trang six times before but this is their first visit to Vietnam since Covid broke out.
"I realized pandemic prevention measures are in place, making me feel secure about my vacation."
Russia and China are traditionally the biggest tourism markets for Khanh Hoa, home to popular beach towns Nha Trang and Cam Ranh and high-end resorts stretching along their beaches.
In 2019, the year before the onset of Covid, Khanh Hoa received over seven million tourists, half of them foreigners.
It is one of five localities to get the green light from the government to allow in fully immunized tourists from November along with Quang Nam, Kien Giang and Quang Ninh provinces and Da Nang.
In the month since the country partially reopened 3,500 foreign visitors have come on package tours, Nguyen Trung Khanh, head of the Vietnam National Administration of Tourism, said at a seminar Friday on reviving tourism.
Vietnam expects to receive five million foreign visitors under the vaccine passport program in 2022.